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2015-02_dc

4 D+C Vol.42.2015:2 Monitor Civil-society activists are not satis- fied with how aid is organised. In a recently published report, the Reality of Aid (RoA) Network, an in- ternational umbrella organisation, makes suggestions on how to im- prove matters. Civil-society organisations (CSOs) are big players – at least in num- bers. According to the Reality of Aid Re- port 2014, they are “managing approxi- mately $ 65 billion in development assistance annually”. The authors point out that this sum amounted to “more than half of real official development as- sistance (ODA) in 2013”. Their definition of “real” ODA is the figure provided by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) minus student grants and other funding that is not transferred to developing nations. The RoA Network includes CSOs from developing countries, emerging econo- mies and advanced nations. It argues that the potential of partnerships with civil society has not yet been tapped suf- ficiently. Effective development coopera- tion, however, depends on well-designed partnerships, the authors insist, and is therefore an issue both on the agenda of the UN Millennium Development Goals and in the debate on drafting the follow- up, the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Eight principles The authors bemoan that typically “the idea of partnership is given rhetorical sig- nificance”, but that such rhetoric does not tend to translate into tangible action. The report spells out eight preconditions for equitable partnership: All action must be based on human rights. Human rights and social standards must bind not only the government, but the private-sector as well. Global civil society South-south cooperation does not always serve poor people: Mozambican man in a Mao T-shirt. Better partnership

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